People’s Champion finalist 2018: Holy Moly Dips

Tired of dour supermarket dips, two life-long friends decided to create their own. Could Holy Moly Dips be your People's Champion?

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Start-up name: Holy Moly Dips
Founders: Tom Walker, Gaz Booth
Started in: May 2016
Based in: Bedford
Business description: Premium food brand producing a range of all-natural guacamole and avocado dips

Shortlisted category:

The Start Up Loans Company Inspiring Entrepreneur of the Year

The Holy Moly Dips story

Just how important is coriander in the creation of guacamole?

It’s a question few of us will have even considered, let alone got worked up about. But a few years ago it sparked an impassioned argument between best mates Tom Walker and Gaz Booth, and that argument has inspired a business which sold over 200 units last year.

Walker and Booth are two self-described “ordinary blokes” who grew up in working-class Sheffield and studied business management side by side at Aston University, before joining the BT management grad scheme and working their respective ways up the corporate ladder.

They were both thriving in the corporate jungle, but having stopped to consider the constitution of guacamole during a Mexican-themed dinner, they soon broached a much wider question: why are supermarket dips so poor that you have to make your own?

The reason, as they discovered, was that it is extremely difficult to preserve fresh avocado without the addition of preservatives. Naturally, the pair decided to set out to create their own dip that could be sold in supermarkets but taste just as good as the homemade stuff.

Walker and Booth timed their venture just right to ride the wave of avocado mania which has also seen a huge increase in sales of guacamole, with over 200 million pots sold last year. Neither founder had any experience in the food sector, but they have used this lack of knowledge to challenge the lazy conventions of established marketing.

Using the latest ‘cold pressed’ packaging technology, Holy Moly Dips has created the UK’s first preservative-free guacamole dips range, and it tastes every bit as good as homemade.

The company is also committed to ethical, environmentally sustainable sourcing they have even partnered with a four-generation family owned avocado orchard in Mexico to source their principal ingredient. Together, the partners worked to keep the carbon footprint of their supply chain as low as possible and use recyclable packaging.

The founders state that their first year of trading was successful “beyond our wildest dreams”, selling over 250,000 units in retailers such as Waitrose, Ocado, Whole Foods and Amazon Fresh.

In August 2018, they secured another major listing with Sainsbury’s, and aim to turnover £19m in the next three years. Their ultimate aim is to keep the momentum going, expand their product range and build a universally recognisable brand.

And, for the record, coriander is included in the list of ingredients on their bestselling avocado dip.

Why Holy Moly Dips made our shortlist:

A truly heartwarming origin story, unmatched work ethic, ethical values, friendship and food: there are so many things to admire about this company, not least the fact it has totally galvanised the fresh dip market.

Where to find out more about Holy Moly Dips:

Twitter: @HolyMolyDips

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